Monday, June 28, 2010

Game 75 Recap

[WE data via FanGraphs]

When Joba Chamberlain gave up an RBI double to Rafael Furcal with two outs in the bottom of the eighth, the Yankees looked to be dead to rights. It cut the Yanks' chances of winning from about three percent to one percent. When Mark Teixeira struck out looking on a 97mph fastball from Jonathan Bronxton leading off the ninth inning, it hacked the Bombers' odds of pulling it out by a third once again from 1.2% all the way down to 0.4%.

There wasn't much reason to be hopeful, either. Andy Pettitte had a bad start (by his high standards this year) despite not getting hit all that hard. The Dodgers laid down three consecutive bunts in the third inning and none resulted in outs - Andy made throwing errors on two of them and the third was a single. He gave up two more on a sac fly and a homer in the fourth, putting the Yanks in a 5-0 hole. The offense had been stagnant up until that point, the only two runs they scored coming on a home run by Alex Rodriguez, but unfortunately he was up after Teixeira and you can't hit a grand slam with the bases empty.

A-Rod did his job of not using up an out, poked a single through left field and advanced on defensive indifference before Robinson Cano drove him in with a double. Jorge Posada singled, moving Cano to third, and advanced on indifference as Curtis Granderson was in the process of working a tough 8 pitch walk from Broxton to load the bases. All of a sudden the Yanks had the go-ahead run at the plate and still only one out.

Recent call-up Chad Huffman (who came in for an injured Brett Gardner) let two 96mph heaters pass, one for a ball and one for a strike, but smacked the third one into right field, driving in Posada and Cano. Colin Curtis, who was also in Scranton not too long ago, battled through a 10 pitch at bat against Broxton and grounded a ball to first. James Loney fielded it and instead of trying to start an inning-ending double play at second or throw home to save the run, he attempted to get the force at first and then throw home. However, Granderson beat the ball to the plate and the score was tied at six runs apiece.

The Dodgers intentionally walked Derek Jeter and retired Frankie Cervelli, but the Yankees had made a divine comeback and gave themselves a chance to steal the series on their way out of the City of Angels.

It wouldn't take long. Riding the momentum of the moment, Girardi went to Mariano Rivera and he took down the side in order in the bottom of the ninth. Robinson Cano rewarded the aggressive move by launching a two run homer in the 10th off of George Sherrill (who Torre brought in specifically for him) to give the Yanks the lead. James Loney led off the bottom half of the inning with a single but Rivera struck out Russell Martin (who got ejected after throwing a tantrum over a pitch that was obviously a strike) and Reed Johnson (who was 3-4 on the night at that point) before inducing a game inning grounder from Jamey Carroll.

Without looking up the specifics, it's feels like it's been a long time since the Yankees have had a miraculous late comeback like this one [Update: Larry says it's the biggest 9th inning rally since April 2007]. It would have been sweet regardless, but the fact that it nailed down a series victory and came against some old friends makes it a little bit sweeter. The team has the day off today as they head back home and rest up before a three game set against the Mariners.


  1. Thanks for the h/t Jay, although I would be remiss if I didn't give credit to Bob Lorenz on YES Extra Innings last night, who initially provided that particular nugget.

  2. I remember that game in 2007 against the Indians. I was listening to it in my office on, turning down the sound every time I heard footsteps outside the door. I couldn't mask what I was doing when A-Rod hit the walk-off and I yelled down the hall.